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Reducing the Carbon Footprint of Earthjustice

As the first day of Earthjustice's annual meeting on global warming came to a close, it struck me how seriously the organization now takes the goal of reducing our own carbon footprint.

How can we fight against global warming if we are part of the problem?

This year's annual strategy session included 28 staff people from around the country. A few years ago, this meeting would have required at least a dozen cross-country air flights, hotel stays, and nights away from family.

That all changed recently as Earthjustice has installed videoconferencing in our Oakland National Headquarters and our Washington, DC offices (with additional regional offices coming online soon).

A back-of-the-envelope calculation finds that such a meeting would have cost at least $7,500 in travel expenses. But more importantly, this system saved the planet at least 17,736 lbs of CO2 pollution associated with air travel.

"While it was strange at first, I think we've all become used to videoconferencing," said Buck Parker, our former executive director and current strategic advisor on Arctic issues.

Personally, I appreciate being able to take my regular bike commute home to sleep in my own bed. I'll return tomorrow refreshed, ready for more great discussion and glad my organization has found a more sustainable way to accomplish our mission.

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